Weighbridges Explained

A weighbridge is a machine that measures the mass of bulky items. It is usually mounted on a sturdy surface and has a screen that shows the weight. Weighbridges are used for weighing trucks and other large vehicles.

There are several types of weighbridges, depending on your preferences. Some of the factors that impact on your choice of weighbridge include budget, availability of space, accessibility, and the regularity of use, and so on. If you are planning to obtain a weighbridge, you need to ensure that you are compliant with local regulations.

There are two broad categories of weighbridges – above-ground and in-ground. In-ground weighbridges are further divided into two classes, pit weighbridges, and fully in-ground weighbridges.

Above-ground Weighbridges

Above-ground weighbridges are the most popular because of their affordability. They also take a shorter time to construct than their in-ground counterparts. That said, they take up larger spaces due to the substantial surface area of entry and exit ramps.

Depending on the size of the vehicles being weighed, above-ground weighbridges can come as a single deck, double deck, or twin deck variants.

Pit Weighbridges

Pit weighbridges are usually level with the ground. Similar to above-ground options, they have multi-deck, double deck, and single deck models.

The absence of ramps reduces the cost of pit weighbridges substantially. However, you will need to incur the charges for digging up and setting up drainage systems and sumps. These weighbridges use side walls as retainers, and they are usually placed one meter away from the side of the deck. The retainers might need extra reinforcement.

Custom Pit Weighbridges

These are similar to standard pit weighbridges, with the only exception being that these are set up in constrained areas. Some of the adjustments made to custom pit weighbridges include the reduction of sidewalls and restriction of load cells. As a result, the side walls next to load cells have access holes to allow servicing and maintenance.

Fully In-ground Weighbridges

These are the costliest option, mostly because of the expenses incurred in site preparation, excavation, and reinforcement. However, they take up small spaces because they are below ground level. Also, this design means that in-ground weighbridges require expert intervention during routine servicing and maintenance operations.

Multiple Deck Weighbridges

Multi-deck weighbridges cut across all of the categories mentioned above. The number of decks in this weighbridge depends on the needs of the user.

With multi-deck weighbridges, each axle can be weighed concurrently, or as a group. This makes them a suitable option for measuring axle breakdown weights.

Portable Weighbridges

Portable weighbridges are suitable for non-commercial operations, as well on sites that are used for less than two years. They are a variant of above-ground weighbridges that use quadrangular concrete slabs for the loading section. The detachable frame serves as the supporting base for the deck and load cells.

The majority of their decks are made of steel, a material which is portable because of its lightweight nature. Alternatively, it can be a combination of concrete and steel. If used for commercial purposes, the portable weighbridge must have reinforced concrete walls.


Weighbridges are mandatory for industries that involve the handling of bulk material such as mining, transport, and so forth. Because it is a significant investment, it is advisable to seek professional advice before making a purchase. Fortunately, the market has a wide range of options to suit everyone’s needs.


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